Exploring Buenos Aires

August 22, 2011

I realize that I’ve been pretty bad about updating this blog lately. So, here goes, I’m going to fill you in on my recent travels in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the city that makes NYC look like a city filled with lazy people that sleep all the time!

This post originally appeared on June 26 on the University of South Carolina’s study abroad blog.

——

This post is coming a bit late this week because I’ve had some trouble deciding what to write about.  My first week here has been quite busy so I’ll give you the highlights.

La Casa Rosada (The Pink House), the building of the executive branch of the government of Argentina, is brightly lit at night.

I finally flew in last Saturday morning after many delays and hours in the airport.  I think my delays were for the best though, because I sat next to an older woman on my flight who just happens to live only a couple blocks from my house in Belgrano (one of the 48 neighborhoods in Buenos Aires). What are the odds?! She was the nicest woman, and we exchanged phone numbers and addresses so I hope to see her again.

On Sunday we took a bus tour of the city with Gaby, our program director, and since then we’ve had a completely free week to explore the city.  I’ve seen quite a few things but my favorites so far were the Museo de Arte Latino-americano de Buenos Aires (MALBA), the Evita Museum, Recoleta Cemetery and the Japanese Garden.

I had heard a lot about the Recoleta Cemetery before I came here but words truly don’t do it justice.  I pictured a cemetery full of extravagant gravestones but Recoleta is more like a city of elaborate crypts and tombs than a cemetery.  Many of the eternal resting places of Buenos Aires’ wealthiest families are nicer than my house!  There is a saying in Bs As that goes “It is cheaper to live extravagantly all your life than to be buried in Recoleta” and after seeing the cemetery I can see why.

One of my favorite crypts in Recoleta - older and less extravagent than many.

A "street" in Recoleta Cemetary.

I adjusted quickly to the porteño sense of time: dinner is much later (usually 10 although my host mom feeds us around 8), many of the dance clubs or boliches don’t even open until 2 am, meaning coming home at 6 am is a normal night.  I’ve become quite a fan of spending hours sitting in a café sipping coffee or wine and solving the world’s problems with a  friend or reading a book.  Porteños (people from Buenos Aires) know how to relax and always have an opinion about everything – I think I’ll fit in nicely here.

A Spanish-style tortilla (an egg and cheese dish, this one with potatoes) - one of the many delicious meals I've had here so far.

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